Indian Govt Chose Ambani For Rafale Deal: Ex-French Prez Hollande
In a shocking development on the Rafale deal fiasco, former French President Francois Hollande told a French newspaper that his government was not given a choice in selecting a local partner for Dassault Aviation, the French aeronautics company responsible for manufacturing the jets for India.
Hollande told the publication, Mediapart, that it was the Narendra Modi-led government that had pitched the name of Anil Ambani’s Reliance for the deal.
He also cleared the air surrounding media reports that Ambani’s Reliance Entertainment had signed an agreement with his partner Julie Gayet to produce a film just two days before Hollande attended Republic Day celebrations in 2016. It was on that same visit that Hollande sealed the deal with Prime Minister Narendra Modi to deliver 36 aircraft.
The Indian government proposed this service group (Reliance), and Dassault negotiated with Ambani. We did not have a choice. We took the interlocutor who was given to us. That’s why, on the other hand, this group did not have to give me any thanks for anything. I could not even imagine that there was any connection to a film by Gayet.
The development comes at a time when the ruling government is under severe criticism by critics and the Opposition over Reliance not having adequate experience to be chosen as the local partner.
Ambani himself, in a letter to Rahul Gandhi, said that the government had no role in Dassault picking Reliance. The government has also denied any involvement in Dassault picking Reliance. In fact, it claimed that it was up to Dassault to choose a local partner.
Hollande Exposes the Web of Lies: Congress
The Congress took to Twitter to slam Bharatiya Janata Party’s (BJP’s) claims on the Reliance-Dassault tie-up, calling them a “web of lies”.
This is what senior advocate Prashant Bhushan had to say.
In the meantime, the Defence Ministry tweeted that neither Indian nor French government had any role to play in the commercial decision.
Source:- The Quint